Alliance Defending Freedom’s mission is to keep the doors open for the Gospel.
This year, our cases representing churches and ministries during COVID-19 government overreach reflect that mission. With God’s blessing, over a dozen churches and ministries who were treated unequally by the government and hindered in their ministry achieved victory in their legal challenges. And we still have cases in court because churches and ministries continue to be treated unjustly in some states.
But we also continue to represent churches and ministries in other matters. One of these involves One Love Ministries and Calvary Chapel Central Oahu—two Hawaiian churches that we have represented for seven years.
Today, on December 4, 2020, Alliance Defending Freedom is representing these churches in court.
In this case, the churches have been sued by two atheists who are trying to punish the churches for simply using school facilities like many other secular groups, falsely accusing them of defrauding the government.
But as soon as their claim is inspected, it falls apart.
The churches had worked on an agreement with local public school leaders in order to be included among all the community groups that are allowed to rent empty school buildings after hours. Anyone who has been a part of a church plant that begins in a public school building knows the drill: The school rents out the space on the weekends, and the church is able to meet for worship services and any other activities as a part of the rental agreement.
Such arrangements are a win-win. The school gets revenue on days that it is otherwise vacant, and the church can meet without having to purchase a building.
One Love Ministries and Calvary Chapel Central Oahu went out of their way to make the arrangement even better for the school. Those at the church voluntarily engaged in mentoring students, landscaping and maintaining portions of the campuses, replacing the floor of an auditorium stage, helping with school bathroom remodels, and removing graffiti.
Does that sound like fraud to you?
For being a good neighbor to these schools, the atheists are seeking millions of dollars in penalties against the church. That’s obviously enough to close the doors of these churches.
Opposition to the Gospel comes in many forms. In this situation, it comes in the form of harassing lawsuits that have no basis in facts.
As ADF attorneys make arguments before the court, we are praying for victory so that the doors of these churches can remain open. And we pray that the Gospel would be faithfully preached to those who oppose it.